Remember when we all thought that Microsoft had issued a letter to XDA requesting that 6.5 ROMs be pulled and threatening action? It turned out to be a hoax but while the details were being worked out a lot of people were pretty angry at MS. Well recently Google issued a real letter regarding Android showing that they do intend to pull the plug on cooks. What they objected to was Goog’s apps being cooked into ROMs (namely YouTube, Gmail, Google Voice, etc). They said:
These apps are Google’s way of benefiting from Android in the same way that any other developer can, but the apps are not part of the Android platform itself. We make some of these apps available to users of any Android-powered device via Android Market, and others are pre-installed on some phones through business deals. Either way, these apps aren’t open source, and that’s why they aren’t included in the Android source code repository. Unauthorized distribution of this software harms us just like it would any other business, even if it’s done with the best of intentions.
The curious thing is that the ROMs being cooked were for Google phones – you know, phones that already had a license to these apps. And the cease and desist letter was sent to a long time modder who had greatly helped the Android platform. Putting aside where you stand on this issue, remember that the iPhone is a locked platform, BlackBerry is locked (I don’t even know if custom ROMs exist) and now the open source Android is a little less open. All of this while Microsoft is seemingly intentionally releasing new builds of WM 6.5.1 for the community to test and cook. Maybe MS is the only one that really gets it…all of the cooking out there helps the platform progress and it keeps fans loyal.
What are your thoughts?